microBiotick : Microbiota and ticks


I- To elucidate the complex interactions between ticks, pathogens and the microbiota; to develop effective anti-microbiota vaccines targeting the key microbial components influencing vector competence.

II- Conduct interdisciplinary research integrating human, animal and environmental health perspectives; influence health policies towards more comprehensive tick-borne disease management strategies.

III- To elucidate the mechanisms underlying the protective immunity conferred by natural antibodies; to explore their potential applications in the development of new therapies and vaccines.

Major results:

1. Development of innovative vaccines: Our team has initiated the creation of anti-microbiota vaccines designed to disrupt the symbiotic relationship between ticks and their microbiota. By precisely targeting key components of the tick microbiota, our aim is to disrupt vector competence and hinder the transmission of deadly pathogens.

2. Revolutionary approach: Unlike traditional methods focused solely on targeting pathogens, our approach addresses the fundamental ecological dynamics within the tick vector. By modulating the microbiota, we aim to alter the vector's ability to acquire, maintain and transmit pathogens, thereby offering a global solution to the prevention of tick-borne diseases.

3. Focus on Lyme Borrelia: Lyme Borrelia, a major public health problem, is a key target for our anti-microbiota vaccine strategy. By reducing the vectorial competence of ticks for Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, we aim to reduce the incidence of this debilitating disease and its associated complications.

4. Potential for Global Impact: Our research offers promising prospects for global health initiatives, particularly in regions heavily affected by tick-borne diseases. By disrupting the microbiota-immunity axis in ticks, our vaccines offer a sustainable and environmentally friendly approach to disease control, with the potential to alleviate the societal and economic burdens imposed by these diseases.

5. Collaborative efforts: Our achievements are the result of collaborative efforts, involving multidisciplinary expertise in microbiology, immunology, entomology and vaccine development. Through synergistic partnerships, we have accelerated the translation of fundamental discoveries into tangible solutions, driving progress towards effective tick-borne disease prevention.

6. Creation of microXpace: Our group designed and launched microXpace (www.microxpace.com). The unique value offered by microXpace to its target audience lies in its innovative approach to addressing the challenges faced by modern agriculture. By harnessing microbial technology, microXpace offers sustainable solutions that promote the health of soil and animal microbiota, reducing reliance on antibiotics and chemicals, while supporting a transition to a more environmentally-friendly, biologically-based economy.


Design of anti-microbiota vaccines.

Design of anti-microbiota vaccines.

Figure taken from (Anti-tick microbiota vaccines: how can this actually work?, 2022, Wu-Chuang et al. Biologia


Bottom-up approach to develop novel anti-microbiota vaccines

Bottom-up approach to develop novel anti-microbiota vaccines

Figure taken from (Anti-tick microbiota vaccines: how can this actually work?, 2022, Wu-Chuang et al. Biologia


Microbiota perturbation by anti-microbiota vaccine reduces the colonization of Borrelia afzelii in Ixodes ricinus, 2023, Wu-Chuang et al. Microbiome.

Rickettsial pathogens drive microbiota assembly in Hyalomma marginatum and Rhipicephalus bursa ticks, 2023, Maitre et al. Molecular Ecology.

Hierarchical shift of the Aedes albopictus microbiota caused by antimicrobiota vaccine increases fecundity and egg-hatching rate in female mosquitoes, 2023, Mateos-Hernández et al. FEMS Microbiology Ecology.

Exploring the co-infection and genetic diversity of multiple tick-borne pathogens in livestock population of Punjab, Pakistan, 2024, Hussain et al. Transboundary and Emerging Diseases.

Microfluidic PCR and network analysis reveals complex tick-borne pathogen interactions in the tropics, 2023, Díaz-Corona et al. Parasites & Vectors.

Exploring the relationship between Faecalibacterium duncaniae and Escherichia coli in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD): insights and implications, 2023, Cabezas-Cruz et al. Computational and Structural Biotechnology Journal.

Emergence of Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever in North Macedonia, 2023, Jakimovski et al. Eurosurveillance.

Detection of bacterial and protozoan pathogens in individual bats and their ectoparasites using high throughput microfluidic real-time PCR, 2023, Corduneanu et al. Microbiology Spectrum.

Variation of bacterial community assembly over developmental stages and midgut of Dermanyssus gallinae, 2023, Wu-Chuang et al. Microbial Ecology.

Conserved core microbiota in managed and free-ranging Loxodonta africana elephants, 2023, Thorel et al. Frontiers in Microbiology.

Tick Activity, Host Range, and Tick-Borne Pathogen Prevalence in Mountain Habitats of the Western Carpathians, Poland, 2023, Zając et al. Pathogens.

Current projects:

Tick-pathogen-microbiota interactions and development of anti-microbiota vaccines: our group is pioneering the development of anti-microbiota vaccines, an innovative approach aimed at disrupting the microbiota-immunity axis in ticks. The aim is to reduce vector competence and mitigate the transmission of tick-borne pathogens, such as the Borrelia responsible for Lyme disease.

One health approaches and impact on health policy: our group works with health professionals to produce compelling evidence to inform policy change, advocating One Health approaches to address the societal impact of tick-borne diseases.

Study of natural antibodies and protective immunity: our group is studying the protective role of natural antibodies, particularly those targeting alpha-galactose, against a wide range of infectious diseases, including pathogens transmitted by mosquitoes and ticks.


  • International

- Dasiel Obregon, University of Guelph, Canada

- Pavle Banović Pasteur Institute Novi Sad, Serbia

- Ryan Rego, Institute of Parasitology, Czech Republic

- Zbigniew Zając, Medical University of Lublin, Poland

- Vaidas Palinauskas, Nature Research Centre, Lithuania

Modification date : 30 April 2024 | Publication date : 20 March 2024 | Redactor : Sophie Bertrand - Clotilde Rouxel